In the summer of 1938, seventy-five years after fighting the bloodiest battle in American history, nearly two thousand Civil War veterans gathered on the fields of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Averaging 94 years-of-age, these veterans of the Blue and Gray came from every corner of the United States – from Maine to California.
Nearly 80 of these veterans came from Missouri, from major cities like St. Louis and Kansas City to small farming towns, such as Bogard and Higbee. Many more, like N.B. Harless of Texas, lived elsewhere, but fought in Missouri Units. Harless was a veteran of the 9th Missouri Cavalry (CS) and fought through Price’s 1864 Missouri Campaign. Knowing they would pass away in the next few years, many of these veterans believed the 1938 Gettysburg Reunion was their final chance to meet fellow veterans, possibly see their comrades, and share their own forgotten stories from the war – the war in the Trans-Mississippi west. Continue reading